Benedict Garrett, aka Johnny Anglais, was suspended from the school where he worked after the authorities discovered that he also earned money as a stripper. I believe the GTC's decision is a recognition of the strength of the arguments that I raised to challenge the view that activities in adult entertainment might "undermine public trust and confidence" in people working in the teaching profession.
Had I not been raised by two open-minded parents and worked in sex education and the sex industry, I might have shared the view of those who associate porn with social ills: paedophilia, rape, sex slavery, abuse, HIV, teen sex, the degradation of women. There is no evidence to prove pornography has either a negative or, for that matter, a positive effect on society. Millions of men and women legally purchase, view and enjoy pornography as a form of entertainment every day.
The vast majority of these people are decent, law-abiding individuals. If anything, exposure to the realities of sex and nudity and living in a society where we are happy to discuss such issues openly makes for a safer and healthier environment for young people.
Sex and pornography are shrouded in a veil of mystery in Britain. If young people have access to the same levels of online pornography as our European counterparts (which they do), why do we have the highest rate of teenage pregnancy and the highest rates of STIs in Europe? Telling young people that sex is always "bad", "wrong" and "immoral" is simply not an adequate response.
Prior to the ban being imposed in 2007 I worked in a school where smoking was sanctioned by the provision of a smoking room.